Saturday, May 13, 2006

Coke Ribs & Potato Puffs

So, made two things tonight, sort of from a mix of a bunch of recipes:

Coke-braised Ribs:

* 1 slab baby back ribs
* 2 cups of Coca-Cola
* 1 tablespoon soy sauce
* 1/4 cup brown sugar (light, in this particular instance)
* garlic powder (to taste)

Mix up all the ingredients save the slab o' ribs. Lay out a strip of aluminum foil twice as long as the rib slab. Place the ribs on 1/2 of the foil, rub some salt on the slab, fold the other half of the foil over, and crimp to form a pouch. Leave one end open. Pour in the coke mixture, and loosely close the open end.

Toss in a 250 degree oven for 2.5 hours.

After 2.5 hours, take the ribs out of the oven, then uncrimp the loosely closed end. Pour out the liquid inside into a saucier, and reduce by half or more, until it's a syrupy consistency. Place the ribs on a grill pan (I would have done this on the BBQ, over some hickory chips, if I'd had the time), and grill until brown, basting with the sauce as you go. Once the ribs are nicely browned, slice 'em up, and serve with the reduction as a dipping sauce.

This was sort of based on a desire to replicate a recipe we had at Andalu, in the city. In terms of mimickry, they were less sweet, and syrupy, which maybe worked better for me. I wouldn't mind actually cooking the ribs with a spice rub first, to give 'em some heat - I'll probably try that next time. It's definitely worth making again, even it if takes say, 3 hours to do.

As for the potato puffs:

* 3 russet potatoes, washed and peeled.
* 1/2 cup whole milk
* 1/2 stick butter
* flour, as needed
* 1 egg
* vegetable oil, for frying

Boil the potatoes in salted water until just squishable with a pair of tongs. Dump the water, then add the butter, chopped into relatively smallish pieces. Mash for a bit. Add the whole milk, once the potatoes have cooled somewhat, and mash until mostly smooth. Beat the egg, and add that. The mixture is pretty light, fluffy, and loose. Add flour, bit by bit, until the mixture feels like a loose gnocchi dough. It should hold together pretty sturdily if you ball it in your hand. Heat up some vegetable oil, to ~325F. Using two spoons form balls of the potato, and drop them into the oil. Remove when they're golden brown & delicious. Salt while still hot, and serve while still lightly crispy on the outside.

So, that was tonight's dinner. Both dishes turned out pretty well, IMO - I'd certainly make them again. The potato puffs were also an attempt to replicate an existing recipe, one from Gregoire - a take out French restaurant on Piedmont Ave. They didn't have the hard shell that Gregoire's puffs have, but they were actually sort of airier, which was pleasant. Strangely good with the Coke reduction. If I had to do this again, I'd actually flavor the potato mixture to complement whatever else it was I was making. With the ribs, I could see trying to do something similar with sweet potatoes, or in a different situation, with some curry powder, or chili powder or something similar.

Great stuff. Fed four people for ~$13.


Blogger h said...

Ooh! Maybe someday I'll have to copy your copy of the Andalu coke ribs. :D

2:10 PM  

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